Title: Books of the Immortals - Air
Author: Barbara G. Tarn
Format: Kindle ebook
How I got this: I received a free copy in return for a fair review.
Synopsis (From Goodreads.com):
Winged Jesminder, a Sila, searches for her Destiny (aka love) as her Human friend, Sarita the sculptor, does the same. Meanwhile Takeshi the soldier flees his country for a murder he doesn't remember committing. As Takeshi looks for his past, Kumar the adventurer runs away from his –from and his wife, Princess Indira, who he rescued from an evil fate only for money. Their paths converge, leading them to the final confrontation with the Black Dame, High Priestess of the Sect. Winged beings, water people, shape-shifting dragons and the Immortal, Air, which likes to meddle in Human affairs for its own reasons, come together in a story of bitterness and love, darkness and light.
So, this was my first visit to the world of Silvery Earth, and I have to say, I enjoyed what I saw. In this world, magical creatures with mythical names (e.g. Sila, Fajrulo) live alongside the humans, and four Immortals – Earth, Air, Ether, Fire and Water champion the different races.
This book really wasn’t what I was expecting, but in a good way. I’m going to say here and now that there are certain points in the book where there are mature themes. There are points where characters within the book use intercourse and sexuality as a means of control or power, which was interesting to read, as it isn’t so very different to what can happen in the real world. These areas of the book, I felt, were well written, and whilst these themes were mentioned throughout, it wasn’t overbearing, and at no point did it seem to overshadow the actual storyline. However, due to these themes, I probably wouldn’t recommend this book to younger readers.
I appreciated the attention to detail on the descriptions of the races – especially characteristics – such as the Fajrulo not being particularly social or able to love. These are also consistent throughout, which helps make Silvery Earth into a tangible world. Of course, this is also helped by the descriptions of the differing cultures within the world, which vary by Kingdom. I felt that there were comparisons to be made between the inhabitants of various areas of Silvery Earth and specific cultures on Earth, but again, that added to the believability of the world.
Another important element in this book is the descriptions of the goings on in The Sect – a dark religious minority, with serious amounts of power. The descriptions were vivid, but left enough to the imagination that as a reader I was always left wondering what would happen next.
I have to admit, I didn’t expect to enjoy this book as much as I did – I ended up really caring for the characters, and hoping that each got the ending that they deserved. I also enjoyed the way that Tarn tied all the loose endings together by the end of the book – something which is often not managed as cohesively as this example. Overall, I really enjoyed this book – a good read, and I can foresee myself returning to Silvery Earth to read more in the future. Recommended for anyone into epic fantasy.
Overall rating: 4.5/5